WCS Education is committed to inspiring a diverse and inclusive movement of conservation advocates and STEM professionals. Our work with youth is a centerpiece of this mission. Each year, over 1,800 youth ages 14 to 24 years old participate in enrichment, volunteer, internship, and employment opportunities across our five parks. The majority of these opportunities are at the Bronx Zoo, making WCS the largest employer of young adults in the Bronx.
The WCS Career Lattice is our integrated careers pathway program through which youth from low-income communities have expanded entry points to opportunities at our parks and equal access to a suite of professional services and supports. The Career Lattice employs a three-pronged approach:
- Connect and recruit young people in local, low-income communities through outreach and partnerships;
- Develop young people through workshops, support services, and skill-building while at WCS;
- Advance young people in their professional journeys through leadership training and tiered professional opportunities in our parks.
The collective impact of this approach empowers young people to pursue meaningful careers, increase their social capital, and develop a conservation ethic.
The WCS Career Lattice is generously supported by the New York City Council, Institute of Museum and Library Services, US Department of Education, The Pinkerton Foundation, Gray Foundation, Charina Endowment Fund, Inc., and numerous individual, foundation, and corporate funders.